How to a Clean a Cowhide Rug Soiled With Dog Urine

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Cowhide rugs are pretty much stylish and have earned their place in modern house spaces. But just like any other beautiful element of the house, a leather cowhide rug also needs timely care and maintenance.

And it becomes even more critical if you have a fur friend at your home. You can train your pets to not urinate within the rooms of the house, but still, you cannot guarantee that they would obey.

And cowhide rugs are their common targets for peeing. So, if you have noticed your pet peeing over the cowhide rug or it is experiencing any foul smell, you must take up the responsibility to clean it right away. 

How to Clean Dog Urine From a Cowhide Rug

People have misconceptions about cowhide rugs that they cannot be cleaned. But it is not the case at all! Cowhide rugs are durable enough to withstand cleaning measures.

You need to ensure that the approach for cleaning the dog urine from cowhide rugs is the right approach. Suppose you have a dog in your house who has some peeing problem around the house space, then you must predictably count on cleaning the rugs on priority.

And for that, you need to learn how to clean dog urine from a cowhide rug. This guide is about to help you master the steps.

a cowhide rug on the floor with another rug, a variety of pillows and a swing chair

Method 1: Cleaning Dog Urine Smell and Stain With White Vinegar & Baking Soda

White vinegar is the universal agent for cleaning aspects. And you need to use it properly for optimum results. It is crucial for you to count on the adequate steps to approach this method and get rid of the stain and smell of dog urine. The steps are as follows:

  1. You need to prepare a solution with 9.5oz of water and 0.5oz of white vinegar. 
  2. Prepare the mixture in a container and stir it well.
  3. The proportion provided in step 1 ensures pH balance and removal of the odor. 
  4. Use a paper towel for scrubbing the cowhide rug and the stained area. 
  5. You can also prefer to spray the solution over the stained area of the cowhide rug. 
  6. Use a paper towel to gently scrub the surface to eradicate the dog urine stain and eliminate the foul odor. 
  7. You must continue repeating the dab/spray and scrubbing process until the stain and odor are out. 
  8. Now, rinse the area properly with a lint-free cloth and clean water to wash off the vinegar solution residues from the surface. 
  9. After the surface is dry, you can now sprinkle baking soda over the spot. 
  10. Sprinkle it thoroughly over the area, and then let it settle down over the rug for around 24 hours. 
  11. You can use a vacuum cleaner to clean the baking soda sprinkles from the surface the next day. Do not prefer dusting off the baking soda, as it will cost you more effort. 
  12. When you are over with that, you can use a knife for scraping the surface. Scrapping will make the cowhide rug look attractive and fluffy again. 

Make sure you do not plan on submerging the cowhide rug entirely in water and vinegar solution. It will disturb the material strength and might affect adversely. So, take note of that! 

How Long Should It Take To Clean Your Home?

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Method 2: Cleaning Dog Urine from Cowhide Rugs Using Commercial Cleaners

There are commercial cleaners available over the counter to help you clean dog urine stains and smell from the cowhide rugs. Get one from online or offline stores, and spray it over the stained area(s). Now, you can use a paper towel or a lint-free cloth to scrub & clean the area gently. 

The stain over the cowhide rug will weaken when you do that, and the odor-removal agents will also remove the foul smell. Now, you can check for cleanliness and foul odor. If it still stinks, then repeat the process, else go ahead with cleaning the area with a soft cloth and clean water. 

In the meanwhile, you can also train your dogs to not urinate over the rug and guide them about the same. But if they still do it, you are now aware of the approach! 

colorful pictures of different commercial cleaning bottles

Method 3: Cleaning Dog Urine From Cowhide Rugs Using Baby Shampoo

A mild shampoo can do wonders when you intend to remove dog urine from the cowhide rugs. There is no shampoo milder than that of the baby shampoo products. Here are the steps to help you learn this cleaning approach:

  1. Get any baby shampoo product from an online or offline store. 
  2. Use a sponge for spot cleaning purposes.
  3. Pour a little amount of shampoo over the sponge. 
  4. Use the sponge to scrub the spot of the dog’s urine stain gently. 
  5. Keep up with the scrubbing until you notice the stain going away. 
  6. The mild shampoo has odor removal agents as well that will clear off the foul smell. 
  7. Now, rinse and clean the cowhide rug with a clean sponge wet with warm water. 
  8. Repeat the process until the cowhide rug is fresh and clean. 

Method 4: Spot Cleaning Dog Urine From Cowhide Rugs With Diluted Soap

Diluted soap is yet another affordable remedy for cleaning cowhide rugs for dog urine stain and smell. As you readily have soaps available at your home, let’s move directly onto the cleaning steps:

  1. You need to clean the towel for the blotting purpose. 
  2. If you notice your dog urinating over the cowhide rug, then you need to turn up for immediate blotting over the surface. 
  3. After blotting, you need to wet a clean and soft sponge. Damp the sponge with warm water. Remember to use only warm water and not hot! 
  4. Now, you need to again blot the stained area continuously with the sponge. Continue with the step until the dog urine is entirely eradicated from the surface of your rug. 
  5. Now, you need to check the soap you are about to use. Check whether it is safe to use it on cowhide rugs or not. Soaps are inexpensive, and you can check their specifications to ensure that you don’t do more damage than maintain the rugs. 
  6. You have to dilute the soap in warm water and then use another sponge to damp in this solution and resume blotting over the urine-stained area. 
  7. Repeat the process for a while until you find the area clean. 
  8. Now, use a clean sponge and damp it with clean water for blotting and removing the soap residues from the rug surface. 
  9. Let it dry naturally. 

A YouTube link is provided here for you to know more about how to clean cowhide rugs for eradicating dog urine. Here is the video link for the same! 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use Fabric Protectors Over Cowhide Rugs to Protect Them From Stains?

Yes, you can always use fabric protectors over your cowhide rugs after cleaning the dog’s urine stain. Scotchgard fabric protector is the most useful option for offering the cowhide rugs’ utmost protection and long life.

If you intend to know how to use this protector over your rug, then follow this link! 

A cowhide rug in a living room

Which Region Is Offering the Best Quality Cowhide Rugs?

The finest quality of cowhide rugs comes from Colombia, Argentina, and Brazil. But the softest quality amongst all comes from Brazil. In fact, the quality of original cowhide rugs is supple, while the duplicate ones will be stiff.

Brazil, Argentina, and Colombia rugs do not have any kind of unpleasant tanning odors in them. They do not use any harsh chemicals on their rugs, thereby making them easily cleanable with all the house remedies stated above. So, if you wish to know more about the quality of the best cowhide rugs, then refer to this article

How Can I Remove the Creases or Folds From The Cowhide Rugs?

You can remove the creases or folds from the cowhide rugs by setting a water-soaked flannel or any lint-free bath towel over the area of the rug that is creased. Now, use a flat iron over the wrinkles in an identical manner.

It means that you should maintain your motion, either vertical or horizontal. To know more about the same, don’t forget to check this informative resource


If you have a cowhide rug in your house and are an owner of a dog, you need to read this article on priority. Keep these cleaning essentials at home to instantly clean off the rugs to prevent more damage.

By doing so, you can make sure your cowhide rug is cleaned and maintained correctly. And it is free from dog urine stains and smell. 

Allen Michael is the Founder and Editor of Home Viable, a website that he started to provide readers with tips on home efficiency and automation. He draws on his engineering background combined with his family-of-four experiences for his articles.